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Female Preachers and False Teachers

There has long been a debate in the denominational world as to whether or not there should be female preachers. Many of them have acquiesced and installed women in the pulpit or some other leadership position over men. Now, there is a debate among churches of Christ as to the role of women.

Female preachers are advocated based on changing times. The argument is that women now play a greater role in society and should in the church. After all, more than half the population is female and a female can best understand their needs. Our reply is, so what? Society never ceases to change. What is popular in one generation is unpopular in the next. A generation or two ago sex before marriage was disparaged, so was divorce (Eph. 5:3-5; Mal. 2:16; Matt. 19:9). Now, both are not only acceptable but encouraged. Should we advocate premarital sex and divorce among brethren? Of course not. What is needed is an adherence to the changeless word of God (1 Pet. 1:24-25). The Holy Spirit condemned the idea of female preachers (1 Tim. 2:11-12). Therefore, it is wrong in any age or society

Sometimes female preachers are defended because, it is said, the first ones to preach the gospel were women. The resurrection accounts are cited, saying women told the apostles of the resurrection of the Lord (Matt. 28:1-8; Mk. 16:1-8; Lk. 24:1-12; Jn. 20:1-2). The accounts also say that angels told the women about the resurrection; they were the first to teach it. So, should we have angels as preachers? The fact is, the action of the women was not performed as preachers or leaders in any capacity, and to say so is to twist the scripture (cf. 2 Pet. 3:16). It is written the women told the disciples about the empty tomb, but “it is written again” that Jesus handpicked certain men to be His ambassadors and the Holy Spirit forbade female preachers (Lk. 6:12-16; Acts 22:14-15; 1 Tim. 2:11-12).

If it is argued that Jesus picked men as apostles instead of women, because of societal conditions, then what about the times He ignored them? Jesus talked to the Samaritan woman at the well; a thing unheard of because she was a Samaritan and a woman (Jn. 4:5-26). “And at this point, His disciples came, and they marveled that He talked with a woman; yet no one said, ‘What do You seek?’ or, ‘Why are You talking with her?'” (Jn. 4:27). Jesus was not afraid to contradict societal taboos (cf. Mk. 2:13-17; 7:1-13).

Female preachers are advocated by false teachers. Some in the denominations and among brethren are swayed by their “good words and fair speeches.” However, those who investigate the truth will see God condemns female preachers.

Steven F. Deaton

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